Follow TV Tropes



Go To

"No mere mortal can resist... the e-vil of the Thriller!"

A thriller is a genre in visual media and literature which focuses on action, fast pacing, tension, and suspense. The conflicts are usually between desperate heroes and powerful antagonists who outmatch them by a large margin. Frequent location changes, time shortage, and Cliffhangers are extremely common.

Thrillers can overlap with almost any other genre. They are more defined by their plot and devices than by their content. They can be identified by the thrills the work gives to the reader or viewer.

Modern incarnations of Thrillers seem to overlap more and more often with the Horror and Science Fiction genres, leading to a misclassification of all Thrillers as being Horror, Science Fiction, or both.

Not to be confused with either the Michael Jackson album or the old Boris Karloff-hosted anthology series, nor yet the 1970s British anthology series. Although the Michael Jackson music video does slightly fit in.


Medium subpages

Related genres

Tropes often associated with the genre


    open/close all folders 

    Anime and Manga 


    Live-Action TV 

    Video Games 
  • Fast & Furious Crossroads
  • Fox Hunt
  • Gods Will Be Watching, a Point And Click thriller with some Science Fiction elements.
  • Metal Gear is a series where every installment tries to replicate feel of a thriller movie. Notably, pretty much every game features a nuclear threat, Metal Gear Solid ends with a typical thriller trope where you fight the main villain with your bare hands, and both Solid 1 and Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty are based "Die Hard" on an X premise, where you're dopped alone - with no weapons - into a facility overtaken by terrorists.
  • Gunpoint attempts to create an interactive noir thriller, dropping the player into a near future town of West Point, which used to be a home of a thriving gun industry - but after a new gun control bill, industry has crashed and burned, and few remaining businesses became extremely ruthless to survive. Notably, the gameplay is based around outsmarting enemies and setting traps for them by hacking electric appliances, and game features mechanics that resemble thriller tropes, like ability to tackle people unarmed (even through a window, several floors down!) or hold them on gunpoint (as the title implies).
  • Late Shift
  • The Quiet Man
  • Blood & Truth

    Web Videos 

    Western Animation